EIGHTEEN-year-old Ashley Cox of Four Miles Housing Scheme, Bartica, will today leave for the Guyana School of Agriculture (GSA) to pursue her life’s goal of becoming an agriculturalist, thanks to the Bartica Mayor and Town Council.
On Thursday, the Council granted Cox a full scholarship to complete her Diploma in Agricultural Science. “I am thankful,” the 18-year-old told the Guyana Chronicle on Friday, noting that the scholarship will relieve her mother of “a great deal of stress.” Cox was alluding to the finances her mother would have had to acquire in order for her to attend the tertiary institution.
“It will help a lot and I know she will make Bartica proud,” her mother added. Cox successfully completed CSEC at the Anna Regina Secondary School, achieving a double award in Agricultural Science.
Bartica’s Mayor Gifford Marshall told the Guyana Chronicle that Bartica over the past year has seen a steady flow of infrastructural development, but said similar attention must be given to education.
“We are often mindful of the famous quote, ‘why build these cities glorious, if man unbuilded goes? In vain we build the world, unless the builder also grows.’”
Marshall said as a consequence and as a meaningful response to the town’s unsatisfactory performance at the National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) and the Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate (CSEC), the Bartica Mayor and Town Council has implemented a number of initiatives including a scholarship programme to assist the children of Bartica.
“The municipality of Bartica has committed to offering scholarships to 10 youths for [the] new academic year. We will not wait for a tertiary institution to come to us [Bartica], we will send our youths for a tertiary education,” he posited.
Meanwhile, Town Clerk Phebe Wallerson said Cox received the first of 10 scholarships to be awarded to Barticians. Currently, the council is assessing two other applications within the system, but said there is room for other residents to apply for scholarships to various educational institutions.
Cox’s scholarship is for a period of two years and is valued at $260, 000. The scholarships, Wallerson noted, are being funded by the Council of Bartica, but said it is opening up the initiative to receive financial support from the business community.